The Mercedes-Benz Electric EQ is making waves in the luxury electric vehicle market, and its next generation of electric vehicles – as evidenced by the highly efficient Mercedes-Benz VISION EQXX concept – will simply raise the competitive bar for range and performance even further. … Mercedes believes that the best way to achieve its goals is to go it alone.
The Mercedes-Benz EQ range of electric vehicles is an interesting blend of Mercedes-Benz engineering and construction know-how and the expertise of electric vehicles from other companies. For batteries, the company worked with CATL for EQS batteries in China and announced plans to join forces with Stellantis and Total Energies as equal partners in Automotive Cells (ACC) to make battery cells for electric vehicles in Europe. For the electric motors in its EQ vehicles, Mercedes reached out to ZF Motors at EQC, and longtime electric motor supplier Valeo Siemens, for the more powerful motors used in the EQS.
With supply chain issues and chip shortages related to the COVID pandemic entering its third year and electric vehicles shifting from the stature of the “EV bubble” to the mainstream auto conversation, however, the need to own the technology is becoming clear to Mercedes-Benz.
To this end, Marcus Schaefer, Head of Development at Daimler, told Automobilwoche (German auto news outlet) that Mercedes-Benz will develop the entire powertrain for the recently announced in-company MMA and MB.EA platforms, with a launch date 2024. “We want to control the general system of the electric motor, battery and power electronics as much as possible, similar to the way a combustion engine works.”
Mercedes will still play well with batteries
It’s interesting to see that while Mercedes-Benz plans to bring electric motor development into the company, there’s no mention of abandoning battery partnerships or previously announced plans to build eight new “megafactories” in Europe in the coming years.
In fact, MB’s, along with its other long-time partners Hyundai and Stellantis, the interest in US-based Factorial Energy may be related to comments from Schäfer about Merc developing its own cells, although that wasn’t clear.
Mercedes-Benz is trying to move quickly to catch Tesla, and it appears they are using Tesla as the benchmark here. Ask yourself, does MB really need to build its own electric motors to deliver the proper ‘Mercedes’ experience? If so, someone should tell the people lining up to drop six numbers on the new EQS 580 4MATIC, you know?
No, that’s because the stock of electric vehicles is rising. Companies like Tesla and Rivian have market frontiers that make the MB board green with envy, and they need to build EVs so they can call themselves an EV company. One thing they don’t need to be able to do, as Tesla also taught them, is to use the batteries on their own. Where does Tesla go, apparently, Mercedes-Benz goes.
“We’re an EV now!” The stadium will come soon enough, I’m sure.
source | Images: Daimler, via Automobilwoche.
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